"There is an Indian proverb that says that everyone is a house with four rooms. A physical, an emotional, a mental and a spiritual. Most of us tend to live in one room most of the time, but unless we go into every room everyday, even if only to keep it aired, we are not a complete person."

Rumer Godden 1907 - 1998

Sunday, 21 July 2013

Renovating a Garden

Not a knitting post this week, I've been on holiday from work for the last week, it's been blisteringly hot so my garden renovation has taken up most of my waking hours.

I should have taken a few "before" shots, so I'd remember how overgrown parts of the garden were when DH and I started work on the project to transform a rather neglected garden into a plant filled cottage garden. Renovating a garden sounds romantic if you read 'The Secret Garden' as a child, the reality is it is hard, dirty and at times difficult!

The garden looked ok in the photos shown on the agent's promotional details, which I reckon were taken over 2 years ago now. These lovely shots taken with a wide angled lens hid the many oversized plants that had taken over a relatively small garden. Every bed was filled with rocks, weeds, plants and fruit bushes which had been left to grow wild.

A rather decrepit shed and a sad greenhouse were hidden in the trees at the top of the picture, the greenhouse must have been too dark to use. And to the right of the little chicken house was a large pond. There's also a 15 foot rise from the patio to the top of the garden, with a right leaning camber!

All of that said, this garden has potential! Since we moved in last May we've been cutting down, hacking back and removing everything that was largely overgrown to try and see what if anything could be salvaged. So far only a small border directly opposite the front door has passed our exacting standards, even so this border needs to be thinned out, which I'll do in the autumn. In February I started working on a long raised border beside our drive, which was absolutely choked with ivy, couch grass, a huge horrid pampas grass left over from the 1970's and the remains of plants totally unsuited to chalky soil. The end nearest the road was "finished", I use the term loosely, with some rubble, so with a bit of muscle and guidance from my DH I now have a small retaining wall holding back the soil.

We've visited a couple of nurseries this week and have started buying plants for it. My collection so far taken from several angles, including a couple of gifts:


mysparemoments.com said...

Some pretty plants and I look forward to seeing them all in situi.

Sandy said...

Oh I wish we lived close...I could have saved you money buying plants. I'm so in need of thinning things out again. I don't work in the yard as much as I used too, arthritis limits me a bit.

Emma (GirlAnachronismE) said...

The garden is looking very pretty! Love the new plants

Angela at Knit Luck said...

That looks like a dream garden to me! It will be worth all the hard work -especially if it ends up anything like the Secret Garden :) The weather will get yucky soon enough -save your knitting for when it's cold!

Kepanie said...

Great garden. You are definitively shaping it productively. How exciting for you.

Kim said...

I love the garden --- even in its overgrown state! So green and pretty...but a lot of work for sure.

julia said...

A garden is a constant WIP, ours is the one that lurks at the bottom of the knitting bag, yours is gorgeous. xx

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